The inside of the Westdahl’s East Anchorage condo is cozy, but rarely warm. A Christmas tree stands in one corner. On the opposite side of the room sits a space heater.


The family has been using two of the appliances to heat their home.


On the coldest nights, Jack and Vanessa Westdahl, along with their four kids, all sleep in the living room to stay warm. They’ve tried using the fireplace, but it proved ineffective and unsafe.


“It got really smoky in here. I even called the fire department because I didn’t want to go to sleep knowing that we might not wake up,” said Westdahl.


The furnace has not worked well since the family moved to the unit in October 2015 after Jack’s aunt, who owned the condo, passed away. The family has spent hundreds of dollars on repairs.


“We’re two months behind on a few bills because of this,” Westdahl explained.


Thankfully, Vanessa’s mother nominated them for Circle Plumbing and Heating’s annual furnace giveaway. The company surprised the family Saturday afternoon with a brand-new furnace.


“If it wasn’t for people like you guys, we’d still be struggling,” Westdahl said after opening the door.


The donation has been an annual tradition for the family-owned business for four years. Its owners were inspired by their late grandfather, Lawrence Embley, who founded the company in 1971.


“It warms your heart,” said Circle owner and treasurer TJ Embley.


He said there are no plans to discontinue the donation program.


“It’s our new favorite family tradition at Christmas and it’s something I believe we’re going to keep doing for quite a while,” he said.


The Westdahls plan to have the new furnace installed Monday.


KTVA 11’s Eric Ruble can be reached via email or on Facebook and Twitter.